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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently got the Mighty Paw Smart Bell for my dog to get her to stop scratching at the door (my poor, beat up door) and have been training with her for the last couple of days. She’s consistently touching the button with her nose but she’s not putting any pressure to it, which needs to happen for the bell to actually work.

She’s made it work twice so far but I don’t believe it was intentional on her part. Either way she got A LOT of praise for it and lots of treats but she hasn’t done it again since.

Anyone have any tips on how I can get her to actually press on the button instead of just tapping it with her nose?
 

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What breed of dog? Some dogs are better with paws than noses.

And, will he nose/paw target your hand? I'd train that first (shout if you need tips), then put a post-it on your hand, and once he is reliably targeting that I'd put the post-it on the bell.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
What breed of dog? Some dogs are better with paws than noses.

And, will he nose/paw target your hand? I'd train that first (shout if you need tips), then put a post-it on your hand, and once he is reliably targeting that I'd put the post-it on the bell.
She’s a pit mix. She got the nose to bell command really quickly which makes me think she can do it with her nose, she just maybe hasn’t made the connection yet to press it. I’m just not sure how to get her to put some pressure to it.

She is really good with her paw targeting but I’d rather she use her nose for this one.
 

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When you said she scratches, I wondered if paw targeting might be easier, but fair enough. This this is what I'd try.

If you don't already use a clicker (or other sound marker) you might need to train that first.

The clicker is a sound marker that you use to click/mark the exact moment she does what you ask - like a snapshot - and also promises a reward for doing that good thing. For training yourself in the timing, watch a tv programme and every time a character uses a particular word, click the clicker. This will train you to react fast. Then charge the clicker for her. Like I said, it marks the moment in time that she does something you want. It also promises her a reward. So simultaneously click and give a treat. Do that five times then have a break. Then repeat that five times over the day (so five times five). Now she knows that click = reward.

Now putting the two together - teach the nose bop. Sit down and hold the clicker in one hand and a treat in the other closed hand, at nose level. She will nudge the treat hand, as soon as she makes contact, click, then release the treat. Do the five times five, or more repetitions if necessary. Then (and this is after a few days of practice) hold your closed hand without a treat. When she nose touches it, click and reward with a treat from a table, your pocket or wherever. Again do your five times five repetitions. Now she has learned to nudge your hand for a reward.

Then you can start to put a word to it, to later ask for this behaviour when you want it - like ”touch” - and you can practice at least five times five with that.

Now, start asking for a harder nose touch to your hand. Only click and reward when there is enough impact that would ring the bell. You might find she gets a little frustrated, that will cause her to bop harder so it is a fine balance - you don't want her to get too frustrated but you do want her to put in that bit more effort.

Once you have that, put a post-it on your hand and get her to nose bop that. Once that is reliable, then you can put the post-it on the bell, get her to bop it on the bell. But by now I'd only click and reward bops that are hard enough to make the sound.

Or the short cut is to just take her out on a schedule!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
When you said she scratches, I wondered if paw targeting might be easier, but fair enough. This this is what I'd try.

If you don't already use a clicker (or other sound marker) you might need to train that first.

The clicker is a sound marker that you use to click/mark the exact moment she does what you ask - like a snapshot - and also promises a reward for doing that good thing. For training yourself in the timing, watch a tv programme and every time a character uses a particular word, click the clicker. This will train you to react fast. Then charge the clicker for her. Like I said, it marks the moment in time that she does something you want. It also promises her a reward. So simultaneously click and give a treat. Do that five times then have a break. Then repeat that five times over the day (so five times five). Now she knows that click = reward.

Now putting the two together - teach the nose bop. Sit down and hold the clicker in one hand and a treat in the other closed hand, at nose level. She will nudge the treat hand, as soon as she makes contact, click, then release the treat. Do the five times five, or more repetitions if necessary. Then (and this is after a few days of practice) hold your closed hand without a treat. When she nose touches it, click and reward with a treat from a table, your pocket or wherever. Again do your five times five repetitions. Now she has learned to nudge your hand for a reward.

Then you can start to put a word to it, to later ask for this behaviour when you want it - like ”touch” - and you can practice at least five times five with that.

Now, start asking for a harder nose touch to your hand. Only click and reward when there is enough impact that would ring the bell. You might find she gets a little frustrated, that will cause her to bop harder so it is a fine balance - you don't want her to get too frustrated but you do want her to put in that bit more effort.

Once you have that, put a post-it on your hand and get her to nose bop that. Once that is reliable, then you can put the post-it on the bell, get her to bop it on the bell. But by now I'd only click and reward bops that are hard enough to make the sound.

Or the short cut is to just take her out on a schedule!
That is genius! I never would’ve thought to do the post-it thing. I’ll definitely try this. Thank you!
 
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